survival horror

Pixel Boost: Clive Barker's Undying at 2560x1440

Wes Fenlon at

Twice a month, Pixel Boost guides you through the hacks, tricks, and mods you'll need to run a classic PC game on Windows 7/8. Each guide comes with a free side of hi-res screenshots from the LPC celebrating the graphics of PC gaming's past. This week: inside the twisted mind of Clive Barker.

If you consult horror master Clive Barker on a video game story, it turns out you get something very, very Lovecraft—but with first-person shooting and spellcasting. Clive Barker's Undying hit the PC in 2001 with a weird mix of occult psychological horror (reminiscent of the GameCube's Eternal Darkness, released the next year) and first-person combat. Barker cited Lovecraft and Poe as inspirations for the game, and that macabre fantasy atmosphere is apparent within the first five minutes of the game. Like Resident Evil, Undying begins in a mansion, but it mixes in spellcasting and an involved occult story. It still feels fresh nearly 15 years later, and you can run it on modern Windows at a high resolution thanks to GOG.

Resident Evil Revelations 2 will be an episodic release; first trailer revealed

Phil Savage at

An unexpected revelation: Resident Evil Revelations 2 will be released episodically. The sequel to the 3DS Resi—later ported to PC—will arrive in four weekly episodes. If you follow that announcement through to its logical conclusions, we are going to be in for some ridiculous cliff-hangers.


The Evil Within gameplay video offers an hour long descent into hell

Shaun Prescott at

In the above video you can watch Bethesda Vice President of PR and Marketing Pete Hines play The Evil Within for an hour. The footage is taken from chapter nine of the Shinji Mikami-helmed survival horror game, and appears to be set in some form of creepy mansion populated by grizzled, aggressive sub-humans.


The problem with survival games

Andy Kelly at

Have you ever seen Survivorman? It’s a documentary series about a guy called Les Stroud who spends a week in the world’s most inhospitable places—deserts, rainforests, tundras—and survives with only the clothes on his back. Fakers like Bear Grylls have doctors on hand, camera crews, and cosy hotels to return to after filming, but Stroud does it all for real—and films everything himself. It’s really good TV, and I promise that after you watch the first episode you’ll be hooked.


Darkwood interactive trailer asks whether you'll fight or flee

Tom Sykes at

Darkwood is a top-down, roguelikey, randomised horror, and one that (based on trailers at least) appears to have an atmosphere you could cut with a rusty machete. We mentioned that it was coming to Steam Early Access back in April, but it turns out that "coming soon" meant "coming in a few months". A new interactive trailer reveals that Darkwood's now pitching camp in the Early Access wilderness on July 24th, a date which couldn't be more next week if it tried.

The Forest goes from nature to nightmare in new gif series

Patrick Carlson at

Upcoming horror adventure The Forest seems to have an appropriately complex relationship with the natural world. A new series of gifs released by developer Endnight Games shows us gentle sea turtles, bounding rabbits, and the horrific plane crash that brought you to the forest. It's a tease, but an effective and story-driven one in advance of the game's release through Steam Early Access May 30.


Don't Starve multiplayer expansion coming this summer

Omri Petitte at

Klei's season-survivor Don't Starve excels as a single-player experience, where a world full of dark forests, Moose-Goose, and warm beards tickles that roguelike itch in all the right ways. A missing and seemingly expected element of the genre—and a subject of heated debate across multiple closed threads on the game's official forums—is multiplayer support so friends can huddle together against winter's chill or place hats on neighboring pig-folk. Surprise: Klei's planning a multiplayer expansion out this summer and free for current Starvians.


Resident Evil 2 remade like Resident Evil 4 looks fantastic

Emanuel Maiberg at

There’s a reason Resident Evil 4 is such a standout in the series. It shed years of traditional features—tank controls, static camera angles, and awkward pacing—and replaced them with shooting mechanics that redefined the action-horror genre. The Resident Evils that came before it are still classics, especially Resident Evil 2, but it’d be so much more fun to play if Leon Kennedy had some of his Resident Evil 4 moves. One fan created a short demo of what that would look like, and it’s as good as you’d suspect.


Darkwood trailer teases impending Early Access scares

Phil Savage at

Can a top-down game be terrifying? If you're an RTS player, you already know the answer. Breaching a fog-of-war with a small, exploratory force, only to run head-long into a 20-unit Mammoth Tank assault? Pant ruining, let me tell you.

Darkwood is hoping that the top-down view can also provide more atmospheric scares. The horror roguelike showed off its twisted, creeping dread through a couple of pre-alpha trailers released last year. Now, a new video is preparing players for an upcoming Early Access release.


Grave wants to be the Eraserhead of indie games, has free demo

Tim Clark at

Forget trying to make the Citizen Kane of games, that's been done. Indie dev Broken Window Studios has its sights set on a far weirder goal. They want their horror game, Grave, to deliver the same discombobulating sense of strange as David Lynch's weirdo classic Eraserhead.


The Evil Within screenshots show more monstrous beasts

Tom Senior at

I've had to stop myself from counting the horror clichés in The Evil Within trailers, as it was putting me off a survival horror game that ought to have much to recommend it. It's from Shinji Mikami, who made Resident Evil, and in a quite unrelated genre occupied only by itself, God Hand. But then he also worked on Dino Crisis. But then he also worked on the excellent Vanquish and Killer 7. I am so confused. Will these new Evil Within screenshots clarify matters? The main with a box for a head suggests "no".


Resident Evil 4 HD update fixes framerate drops, Capcom tackling other community issues

Ian Birnbaum at

A new patch for classic action game Resident Evil 4 HD arrived late last week, bringing with it a handful of tweaks and bug fixes. It’s nothing groundbreaking, but what is encouraging is that this RE4's fifth update in as many weeks. Updates seem to be scheduled for every Friday for the foreseeable future, a schedule that shows Capcom is absolutely serious about supporting this PC port. As the grumpy survivors of too many terrible PC ports, this is a commitment we'd like to celebrate.


Unreal Engine 4 sci-fi horror game Caffeine takes to Indiegogo

Emanuel Maiberg at

Caffeine, a first-person horror game powered by Unreal Engine 4, has launched a crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo. If it hits its funding goal, Caffeine promises to deliver a chilling, beautiful experience inspired by Doom 3, Condemned, and FEAR 2.


Alien: Isolation bursts out in October

Tim Clark at

In a startling break with standard practice, it seems Sega has taken to announcing the release dates of AAA games on a Saturday. This way lies madness, friends. What next, Half-Life 3 confirmed on Christmas Eve. Anyway. Alien: Isolation. October 7th.


Arma 3 mod 2017 shows a world of creepers and sadists in new video

Patrick Carlson at

In a new video for 2017, an upcoming survival-horror mod for Arma 3, the creature prototypes hint at multiplayer enemies with a dark and—and maybe inhuman—past. A good horror story usually has a moment where the hunted get's a glimpse of what's hunting him. It's often a split second of terror where the main character finally realizes just how out-matched he really is. And with its creeper and sadist characters, 2017 is putting its idea of horror on clear display.


The Forest early access coming May 22, new trailer scarier than ever

Emanuel Maiberg at

Endnight Games has announced that its survival-horror game The Forest has a new “targeted release date” of May 22, when the game will be available on Steam Early Access. The announcement also comes with a new trailer that gives us the most comprehensive look at the game so far, and it looks even creepier that before.


Outlast Whistleblower DLC out in April

Emanuel Maiberg at

Red Barrels announced that Whistleblower, a prequel piece of DLC for its first-person horror game Outlast, will come out in April.


Co-op survival horror Obscure heading to Steam in March

Tom Sykes at

As good as the current crop of first-person horror games are, I sorely miss the days of tankwalking, fixed-perspective survival horror. Hydravision's Obscure was one of the better games not to feature the words 'resident' or 'hill' in its title, thanks to its near-copyright-infringing riffing on the fun teen horror film The Faculty, its well-meaning but not implemented particularly brilliantly same-screen co-op, oh and its giant evil plants. Giant evil plants! Both Obscure and its mechanically smoother sequel did see a PC release back in the day, but if you don't fancy paying over the odds for a disc copy you'll soon be able to pick the games up on Steam. No word on a price yet, but the re-releases will feature added widescreen and 360 controller support - which is nice. I've checked the trailer below and, phew, character Stanley's cheeky resemblance to The Faculty's Josh Hartnett remains intact.


DayZ Diaries: the one where Andy wonders what's next

Andy Kelly at

Every week, DayZ Diaries recounts Andy's adventures in post-apocalyptic survival sim DayZ, where beans and friends are frequently in short supply. This week, Andy looks to the future of DayZ.

I’ve logged 98 hours in the DayZ alpha since it was released in December, and I think I’ve finally bled it dry. When I start a new life I have a routine. I hit the nearest town to my spawn point, scavenge as much food and drink as I can, then head inland. Here I pick the towns that everyone ignores clean until I have a backpack, a fire axe, and maybe a weapon if I’m lucky. Then I’ll hit an airfield or military base and, providing I survive, pick up a tactical vest, ammo, weapon attachments, and other military gear. I’m so familiar with the map now that I can do this in as little as an hour. Then I reach the point that every geared player in DayZ has experienced at least once: what do I do now?

The Evil Within release date set for late August

Phil Savage at

Bethesda couldn't have picked a better time to announce the release date of The Evil Within. Nothing says Valentine's Day affection like the fetid mould of a nightmarish industrial hellscape made from razor wire and screaming. You can certainly feel the love oozing through the game, assuming that by "love" you really mean "pools of clotting blood". Well, it is a holiday all about the heart.

The publisher has certainly realised my own worst nightmares, by revealing the August 26th launch through a Vine teaser. Shudder.